NHL Betting News and Notes Saturday 3/3

NHL Betting News and Notes Saturday 3/3

Saturday's Best NHL Bets
By Covers.com

New York Islanders at Boston Bruins (-230, 5.5)

Time is running short for the Boston Bruins if they are to have any hope of catching the New York Rangers atop the Eastern Conference. Boston faces a New York daily double this weekend, hosting the Islanders on Saturday before visiting the Rangers on Sunday.

The Islanders arrive at TD Garden having lost three straight. To salvage the finale of a four-game road trip, New York will need a better effort than when the teams met in November, when the Isles were bludgeoned by Boston 6-2 and 6-0 in a 13-day span.

David Krejci notched his second career hat trick, including the tying goal and game-winner in overtime, to rally Boston to a 4-3 win at New Jersey on Thursday.

The over is 5-1 in the last six meetings. Look for the Bruins to erupt again on Saturday.

Pick: Over

St. Louis Blues at San Jose Sharks (-120, 5)

A hiccup in their last game wasn’t enough to diminish what has been a successful road trip for the Blues. They will now look to stay unbeaten this season against the San Jose Sharks while closing out six-game jaunt on Saturday night.

The Blues have won the first three meetings this season, including shutting out the Sharks the past two. St. Louis is the NHL’s top defensive team and leads the league with 12 shutouts. The Blues have killed off their last 12 penalties.

St. Louis had won its first four games of the trip before a 2-0 loss to Western Conference-leading Vancouver.

The Sharks may have to find a way to win again without head coach Todd McLellan, who has missed two games with concussion-like symptoms after being struck in the head with a stick. McLellan ran practice for the first time Friday but has not yet been cleared to return to the bench for games.

Sharks second-leading scorer Logan Couture has missed two straight with a lower-body injury. He did not practice Friday and is questionable to face St. Louis.

Pick: Blues

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NY ISLANDERS (26-29-0-9, 61 pts.) at BOSTON (38-21-0-3, 79 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 1:05 PM

Top Trends for this game.
NY ISLANDERS are 9-23 ATS (+38.7 Units) revenging a loss versus opponent this season.
BOSTON is 24-26 ATS (-22.5 Units) in home games after scoring 4 goals or more in their previous game over the last 3 seasons.
BOSTON is 146-133 ATS (-65.2 Units) in home games when playing against a team with a losing record since 1996.
BOSTON is 1-6 ATS (-10.3 Units) when playing against a team with a losing record in the second half of the season this season.
BOSTON is 20-25 ATS (-14.3 Units) on Saturday games over the last 2 seasons.

Head-to-Head Series History
BOSTON is 7-3 (+2.6 Units) against the spread versus NY ISLANDERS over the last 3 seasons
BOSTON is 7-3-0 straight up against NY ISLANDERS over the last 3 seasons
6 of 10 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Over=+2.1 Units)
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TORONTO (29-28-0-7, 65 pts.) at MONTREAL (25-30-0-10, 60 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 7:05 PM

Top Trends for this game.
TORONTO is 21-38 ATS (-18.0 Units) when playing with 2 days rest over the last 3 seasons.
TORONTO is 17-36 ATS (+57.7 Units) after a non-conference game over the last 3 seasons.
MONTREAL is 25-14 ATS (+10.5 Units) on Saturday games over the last 2 seasons.
TORONTO is 21-19 ATS (+47.9 Units) in road games revenging a loss versus opponent over the last 2 seasons.
MONTREAL is 24-40 ATS (+72.8 Units) in all games this season.
MONTREAL is 5-11 ATS (-6.4 Units) in a home game where where the total is 5.5 this season.
MONTREAL is 6-14 ATS (-11.2 Units) after allowing 4 goals or more this season.
MONTREAL is 4-12 ATS (-8.0 Units) after scoring 4 goals or more in their previous game this season.
MONTREAL is 1-7 ATS (-7.8 Units) in home games vs. division opponents this season.
MONTREAL is 0-6 ATS (-6.7 Units) in home games after a non-conference game this season.

Head-to-Head Series History
MONTREAL is 8-8-0 straight up against TORONTO over the last 3 seasons
11 of 16 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Under=+5.2 Units)
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TAMPA BAY (30-28-0-6, 66 pts.) at CAROLINA (24-27-0-13, 61 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 7:05 PM

Top Trends for this game.
TAMPA BAY is 246-336 ATS (-112.8 Units) when playing against a team with a losing record since 1996.
TAMPA BAY is 92-182 ATS (+333.6 Units) in a road game where where the total is 5.5 since 1996.
TAMPA BAY is 87-76 ATS (+166.6 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
TAMPA BAY is 21-16 ATS (+43.8 Units) when playing on back-to-back days over the last 3 seasons.
TAMPA BAY is 40-29 ATS (+10.9 Units) vs. division opponents over the last 3 seasons.

Head-to-Head Series History
TAMPA BAY is 9-7 (+1.6 Units) against the spread versus CAROLINA over the last 3 seasons
TAMPA BAY is 9-7-0 straight up against CAROLINA over the last 3 seasons
11 of 15 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Over=+6.6 Units)
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NASHVILLE (37-20-0-7, 81 pts.) at FLORIDA (30-21-0-12, 72 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 7:35 PM

Top Trends for this game.
FLORIDA is 10-2 ATS (+12.4 Units) on Saturday games this season.
NASHVILLE is 36-27 ATS (+5.0 Units) in all games this season.
NASHVILLE is 27-19 ATS (+50.9 Units) in a road game where where the total is 5 or less over the last 2 seasons.
NASHVILLE is 49-34 ATS (+11.5 Units) second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
NASHVILLE is 26-15 ATS (+9.3 Units) on Saturday games over the last 2 seasons.
FLORIDA is 76-115 ATS (+205.7 Units) in a home game where where the total is 5 or less since 1996.
FLORIDA is 24-47 ATS (-28.1 Units) second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
FLORIDA is 52-79 ATS (-45.2 Units) in home games in non-conference games since 1996.

Head-to-Head Series History
NASHVILLE is 3-1 (+2.0 Units) against the spread versus FLORIDA over the last 3 seasons
NASHVILLE is 3-1-0 straight up against FLORIDA over the last 3 seasons
2 of 2 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Under=+2.1 Units)
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COLUMBUS (19-38-0-7, 45 pts.) at PHOENIX (33-22-0-9, 75 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 8:05 PM

Top Trends for this game.
COLUMBUS is 19-44 ATS (+82.9 Units) in all games this season.
COLUMBUS is 0-8 ATS (+9.0 Units) after a win by 2 goals or more this season.
COLUMBUS is 8-29 ATS (+55.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
COLUMBUS is 27-66 ATS (+127.3 Units) in a road game where where the total is 5.5 over the last 3 seasons.
PHOENIX is 128-110 ATS (+257.6 Units) in all games over the last 3 seasons.
PHOENIX is 68-53 ATS (-0.7 Units) second half of the season over the last 3 seasons.
PHOENIX is 66-68 ATS (-50.0 Units) in home games when playing against a team with a losing record in the second half of the season since 1996.

Head-to-Head Series History
PHOENIX is 6-3 (+3.4 Units) against the spread versus COLUMBUS over the last 3 seasons
PHOENIX is 6-3-0 straight up against COLUMBUS over the last 3 seasons
5 of 9 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Over=+1.4 Units)
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PITTSBURGH (37-21-0-5, 79 pts.) at COLORADO (33-28-0-4, 70 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 9:05 PM

Top Trends for this game.
COLORADO is 33-32 ATS (-15.5 Units) in all games this season.
COLORADO is 12-7 ATS (+19.5 Units) after scoring 1 goal or less in their previous game this season.
COLORADO is 17-15 ATS (+34.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
COLORADO is 11-3 ATS (+15.0 Units) in non-conference games this season.
PITTSBURGH is 8-1 ATS (+6.8 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season this season.
PITTSBURGH is 17-5 ATS (+11.2 Units) in road games on Saturday games over the last 2 seasons.
PITTSBURGH is 73-67 ATS (+151.9 Units) in road games when playing with 2 days rest since 1996.
COLORADO is 6-24 ATS (+37.4 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
COLORADO is 22-47 ATS (-34.7 Units) second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.

Head-to-Head Series History
PITTSBURGH is 3-0 (+3.0 Units) against the spread versus COLORADO over the last 3 seasons
PITTSBURGH is 3-0-0 straight up against COLORADO over the last 3 seasons
2 of 3 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Under=+1.1 Units)
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BUFFALO (29-27-0-8, 66 pts.) at VANCOUVER (41-16-0-8, 90 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 10:05 PM

Top Trends for this game.
VANCOUVER is 110-62 ATS (+32.1 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
VANCOUVER is 5-0 ATS (+5.0 Units) after shutting out their opponent in their previous game this season.
VANCOUVER is 14-2 ATS (+10.9 Units) in March games over the last 2 seasons.
VANCOUVER is 24-7 ATS (+13.1 Units) after 3 or more consecutive unders over the last 3 seasons.
BUFFALO is 22-17 ATS (+41.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
BUFFALO is 13-5 ATS (+18.8 Units) in road games after a non-conference game over the last 2 seasons.
VANCOUVER is 183-173 ATS (-93.0 Units) in home games second half of the season since 1996.

Head-to-Head Series History
BUFFALO is 1-1 (+0.0 Units) against the spread versus VANCOUVER over the last 3 seasons
VANCOUVER is 1-1-0 straight up against BUFFALO over the last 3 seasons
1 of 2 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Over=+0.0 Units)
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ST LOUIS (40-18-0-7, 87 pts.) at SAN JOSE (33-23-0-7, 73 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 10:35 PM

Top Trends for this game.
ST LOUIS is 40-25 ATS (+6.5 Units) in all games this season.
SAN JOSE is 33-30 ATS (-8.8 Units) in all games this season.
SAN JOSE is 10-16 ATS (-18.8 Units) revenging a loss versus opponent this season.
SAN JOSE is 5-11 ATS (-11.0 Units) after a non-conference game this season.

Head-to-Head Series History
ST LOUIS is 5-6 (+0.3 Units) against the spread versus SAN JOSE over the last 3 seasons
SAN JOSE is 6-5-0 straight up against ST LOUIS over the last 3 seasons
7 of 11 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Under=+2.0 Units)
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ANAHEIM (28-27-0-10, 66 pts.) at LOS ANGELES (29-23-0-12, 70 pts.) - 3/3/2012, 10:35 PM

Top Trends for this game.
ANAHEIM is 20-6 ATS (+11.9 Units) when playing against a team with a losing record in the second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
ANAHEIM is 47-28 ATS (+17.0 Units) second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
ANAHEIM is 12-3 ATS (+8.5 Units) in March games over the last 2 seasons.
LOS ANGELES is 28-35 ATS (+67.5 Units) in all games this season.
LOS ANGELES is 124-142 ATS (+268.5 Units) in a home game where where the total is 5.5 since 1996.
LOS ANGELES is 68-83 ATS (-48.0 Units) in home games after a win by 2 goals or more since 1996.
LOS ANGELES is 11-15 ATS (-9.1 Units) when playing against a team with a losing record this season.
LOS ANGELES is 4-9 ATS (-8.6 Units) when playing against a team with a losing record in the second half of the season this season.
LOS ANGELES is 10-15 ATS (-13.2 Units) second half of the season this season.
LOS ANGELES is 6-13 ATS (+6.0 Units) on Saturday games this season.

Head-to-Head Series History
LOS ANGELES is 9-7-0 straight up against ANAHEIM over the last 3 seasons
11 of 16 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons . (Under=+5.0 Units)

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NY ISLANDERS vs. BOSTON
NY Islanders are 1-5 SU in their last 6 games
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of the NY Islanders last 12 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Boston's last 6 games at home
Boston is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games at home

TAMPA BAY vs. CAROLINA
The total has gone OVER in 6 of Tampa Bay's last 7 games on the road
Tampa Bay is 4-10 SU in its last 14 games on the road   
Carolina is 10-4 SU in its last 14 games when playing at home against Tampa Bay
Carolina is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Tampa Bay

TORONTO vs. MONTREAL
The total has gone OVER in 7 of Toronto's last 10 games when playing on the road against Montreal
Toronto is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games
Montreal is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Toronto
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Montreal's last 5 games when playing Toronto

NASHVILLE vs. FLORIDA
Nashville is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games
Nashville is 1-5 SU in its last 6 games on the road   
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Florida's last 6 games when playing Nashville
Florida is 3-7-3 SU in its last 13 games ,when playing Nashville

COLUMBUS vs. PHOENIX
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Columbus's last 7 games when playing on the road against Phoenix
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Columbus's last 6 games when playing Phoenix   
Phoenix is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games
The total has gone UNDER in 9 of Phoenix's last 12 games

PITTSBURGH vs. COLORADO
Pittsburgh is 1-5 SU in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Colorado
Pittsburgh is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games   
Colorado is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games at home
Colorado is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games

BUFFALO vs. VANCOUVER
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Buffalo's last 5 games when playing on the road against Vancouver
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Buffalo's last 5 games   
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Vancouver's last 5 games when playing at home against Buffalo
Vancouver5-0-1 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Buffalo

ANAHEIM vs. LOS ANGELES
The total has gone UNDER in 9 of Anaheim's last 10 games when playing Los Angeles
Anaheim is 3-6 SU in its last 9 games when playing on the road against Los Angeles   
The total has gone UNDER in 9 of Los Angeles's last 10 games when playing Anaheim
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Los Angeles's last 7 games at home

ST. LOUIS vs. SAN JOSE
St. Louis is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of St. Louis's last 7 games when playing on the road against San Jose
San Jose is 7-2 SU in its last 9 games when playing at home against St. Louis
San Jose is 2-7 SU in its last 9 games

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Hockey Night In Canada: NHL Betting Preview
By Bill McBride   
Covers.com

Toronto Maple Leafs at Montreal Canadiens (-135, 5.5)

Reduced to playing out the string in front of some extremely disappointed fans, the Montreal Canadiens can at least play spoiler against their biggest rival. But with the way Toronto is going these days, the question has to be raised: Do the Maple Leafs even need a spoiler?

Wilson fired


With the team in a 1-9-1 skid, Leafs coach Ron Wilson was fired Friday night and replaced by Randy Carlyle. The 55-year-old Carlyle coached Anaheim for seven seasons and led the team to five playoff appearances.

Making a move with Matthew


It’s hard to believe how far the Maple Leafs have fallen. Once a candidate for a division title and a top-four seed in the Eastern Conference, Toronto was somehow five points out of a playoff spot through Thursday’s action, and showing no signs of snapping out of it.

In Wednesday’s 5-4 loss to Chicago, Wilson had finally had it with center Matthew Lombardi. Lombardi is a minus-13 and has scored just once with three points in the last 15 games he’s suited up in. So Wilson told him not to dress and sent him up to the press box.

Lombardi had four shots and two blocks in a 2-1 loss to San Jose on Feb. 23, but he followed that up with no shots and a minus-3 rating combined in his next two games, leaving Wilson with no choice. Lombardi is hardly the biggest reason for the Toronto decline, but someone had to pay the price.

A win is a win

It’s abundantly clear that nothing’s going to come easy for the Canadiens the rest of the way. When you’re a bad team, you get few breaks and you have to finish games or else you’ll never snap out of it.

Take Thursday night for example: The Canadiens, desperate to snap a five-game losing streak, played too tight in the third period against the Wild and blew a three-goal lead.

Fortunately, for them, David Desharnais’ goal in the ensuing shootout bailed Montreal out and the Canadiens escaped with a 5-4 win. Desharnais had three points as the skid finally ended. But you have to wonder how many more rallies like that one does this last-place team have in it?

No longer Phil-ling it up

Toronto’s struggles have even caught up to forward Phil Kessel, who’s had such a memorable season. In the end, his totals will still be great, as he takes 32 goals and 68 points into this game. But he only has two tallies in his last 10 games and has been a minus player in five of the last six contests.

And there's good news, bad news on the Kessel front, when it comes to the Canadiens. The last time these two teams met on Jan. 21, he did manage seven shots. But he was kept off the score sheet. So who knows what to expect from him here.

History

The two teams have split the season series so far, but the Canadiens have recorded five of a possible eight points along the way and have won the last two contests by a combined score of 8-1. Three of the four games have gone under, but the Maple Leafs have posted three consecutive over finishes overall.

Buffalo Sabres at Vancouver Canucks (-200, 5)

Left for dead months ago, goaltender Ryan Miller and Buffalo are hanging tough in the Eastern Conference playoff race. The Sabres likely won’t get to the postseason, but they do seem inspired and that’s good here, because they’ll need all the help they can get against the mighty Canucks.

Miller Time once again

There was trade talk. There were rumors that he wasn't inspired. And there were people all-out forgetting about his amazing Olympic run just two years ago. But Miller is back and he's motivated his teammates.

In fact, Miller made 39 saves en route to his second shutout in two nights Thursday, as Buffalo outlasted San Jose 1-0. The night before, he blanked Anaheim 2-0. He made 82 stops in both games on the West Coast.

The hard-charging Canucks will be a different animal. But, in a Silver Medal effort some 25 months ago, Miller seemed fairly comfortable in Vancouver.

Boosted by Burrows


It hasn't been a great run for Vancouver forward Alexandre Burrows, but perhaps a game-winning goal Thursday night will jumpstart him.

Burrows scored his 23rd goal as the Canucks defeated St. Louis 2-0 in a battle of Western Conference powers. It was his first goal since Feb. 18 -- a span that ran seven games.

He might be back now, and even if not, it's been a good season. Entering this game, he has 20 assists and 43 points. Perhaps most importantly, as the Canucks try to buckle up for a long, tough playoff road, he's a plus-22.

Ehrhoff set to make his return

It'll be interesting to see the reception that Buffalo defenseman Christian Ehrhoff receives from the crowd. Traded from the Canucks to the Sabres just before he became a free agent, Ehrhoff managed a megadeal from new Buffalo owner Terry Pegula.

Things haven't quite worked out for the new-look Sabres, despite this late run. But Ehrhoff is coming along. The defenseman, who helped Vancouver to the Stanley Cup Final last season, has four goals and 26 points.

And he's getting hot. In the 2-0 win over Anaheim, he assisted on both goals and has nine shots in his last four games.

History


Remember, these are two teams from two different time zones, two different conferences, and two different countries, so there's only a small sampling. But trends are trends, and dating back to Jan. 19, 2007, Buffalo has won three of four in this series. The Sabres are also 0-4-1 over/under in their last five games.

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Hot teams
-- Lightning won six of its last eight games.
-- Coyotes won 11 of their last 13 games.
-- Penguins won last four games, allowing six goals. Colorado won four of its last five games.
-- Sabres won five of their last six games. Canucks won seven of their last eight home games.
-- St Louis won four of its last five games.

Cold teams
-- Bruins are 0-10 in game following their last ten wins. Islanders lost their last five road games, allowing 21 goals.
-- Montreal lost five of its last six games. Maple Leafs lost six in row, 10 of last 11 games, and fired their coach.
-- Carolina lost three of its last four games.
-- Florida lost four of its last five home games. Predators lost five of their last six road games.
-- Blue Jackets lost nine of their last 12 road games.
-- Sharks lost seven of their last nine games.
-- Anaheim lost its last two games, scoring one goal. Kings lost seven of their last ten games.

Totals

-- Six of last eight Islander games went over the total.
-- Last six Toronto road games went over the total.
-- Four of last five Lightning games went over the total.
-- Last three Florida games went over the total.
-- Four of last five Columbus road games stayed under total.
-- Over is 4-0-1 in last five Pittsburgh road games.
-- Under is 4-0-1 in Buffalo's last five games.
-- Blues' last three games in San Jose went over the total.
-- Last nine Anaheim games stayed under the total.

Series records
-- Bruins won six of last seven games against the Islanders.
-- Road team won five of last six Toronto-Montreal games.
-- Lightning won four of last six visits to Carolina.
-- Home side won six of last seven Nashville-Florida games.
-- Coyotes won six of last eight games with Columbus.
-- Penguins won last two games with Colorado, 3-2/6-3.
-- Canucks lost 4-3 in OT at Buffalo in LY's meeting.
-- Blues are 3-0 against San Jose this year: 4-2/2-0/3-0.
-- Kings won three of last four games against Anaheim.

Back-to-Back
-- Tampa Bay is 3-4 when it played the night before.
-- Anaheim is 2-3 when it lost the night before.

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